Post-Pandemic Holistic Trends Dominate Fitness Sector

More consumers than ever are focusing on their health and wellbeing, according to the 2021 Global Fitness Report by Les Mills—and the fitness industry has to keep up with the post-pandemic trends.

Consumers no longer want to go to fitness providers or gyms; when they do go to gyms, they prefer gyms closer to their homes than in urban areas near their offices. Outdoor fitness groups are also popular in the United Kingdom, as gyms are still thought of as hotbeds for the COVID-19 virus. The Les Mills report says that fitness clubs' main challenge is using digital tools to keep member motivation and engagement up while also providing offerings that consumers cannot get at home.

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For the most part, home or virtual reality (VR) fitness solutions have replaced gyms for many consumers. Companies such as Peloton and Zwift keep up with these trends by offering home workout equipment and virtual classes. Peloton's membership doubled from March 2020 to March 2021, and Zwift's membership tripled. Health and holistic wellness products, such as food products or meditation classes, are also a hit among consumers. Fitness lovers are more interested in spending money on experiences that help promote a healthy lifestyle and are catered to the individual, as everyone's physical abilities, limits, and preferences are different.

Experts at The Drum recommend that brands should get creative about consumer engagement and include support and continuing education to benefit health-conscious customers. Personalized health and fitness coach firm Whoop has been targeting this market segment well, creating an app that helps clients track various inputs like sleep habits, workout reps, and food while receiving expert advice on how to tweak their workouts. The Drum also recommends integrating mental health into various fitness services, facilitating a more well-rounded approach to wellbeing than just exercise.